Town: Main Street project contractor strikes another gas line after violating Dig Safe law

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The town announced Wednesday that the Main Street Corridor Project contractor, A.F. Amorello & Sons, struck an active gas line while doing work Monday near the intersection of Main Street and Pleasant Street.

Eversource Gas was notified and repaired the leak within a couple of hours. Road closures on Main Street and Pleasant Street were required.

According to the town, Amorello did not wait for Eversource to mark the lines before doing the work, as required by law.

“Massachusetts State law requires that a contractor contact Dig Safe at least 72 business hours (excluding weekends and legal holidays) prior to digging,” the town’s press release stated. “Once notified, Dig Safe will contact member utilities to come to the site and mark underground utility wires, cables and pipelines. Amorello reported that Dig Safe had been contacted, but they began excavating before Eversource Gas had marked out their lines. Although Amorello was aware that there were active gas lines in the area and they were excavating carefully, they hit the gas line.

“As a result of proceeding to excavate without waiting for Eversource Gas to mark their gas lines, it is the Town’s understanding that Eversource Gas is taking this incident seriously and will follow the appropriate protocols for violation of the Dig Safe law.

“The Town has reviewed this event with MassDOT for reassurance that they will not allow similar incidents to happen and that moving forward all rules required by Dig Safe will be followed.”

This is at least the third time a gas line has been hit as part of the project. On May 10, the downtown area was closed to vehicular traffic for about two hours after a line was struck at the corner of Main Street and Grove Street. And early on June 1, project workers struck a gas line on West Main Street. It was repaired quickly by Eversource.

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